Detroit Evening Report: Animal Control urges Detroit residents to keep pets inside amid frigid temperatures

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When temperatures drop, pets should not be left outside for an extended time.

When temperatures drop, pets should not be left outside for an extended time.

Frigid temperatures in Michigan are prompting Detroit Animal Control to remind animal owners to bring in their pets if possible.

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A Wind Chill Advisory will be in effect for all of southeast Michigan from 7 p.m. Tuesday through noon Wednesday, with wind chills 15-20 degrees below zero expected. Anyone exposed to the extremely cold temperatures for more than 30 minutes could get frostbite, according the the U.S. National Weather Service, so caution should be taken, and that includes our pets.

The state of Michigan requires by law to provide outdoor animals with adequate food, water and shelter. A well-built, insulated, slant-roof dog house that is off of the ground and protected from strong winds is considered adequate.

Cats should be kept indoors or at least brought into a warm, animal-proofed garage or shed during severe weather. It’s equally important to remember cats often seek the warmth of car engines, so knock on the car hood or honk the horn before starting the car to give them a chance to escape.

Animal owners who do not follow the law will be subject to misdemeanor animal cruelty violations, which could carry a sentence of up to 93 days in jail, up to $1,000 fine, community service and losing the right to own a pet for a specific amount of time.

To report pets left outside without proper shelter in Detroit, residents can call the Detroit Animal Control Hotline at 313-922-DOGS (3647).

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  • Tia Graham
    Tia Graham is a reporter and Weekend Edition Host for 101.9 WDET. She graduated from Michigan State University where she had the unique privilege of covering former President Barack Obama and his trip to Lansing in 2014.